We all know the obvious is to slow down when driving in the rain, especially in Singapore when the monsoon season kicks in and downpours can be sudden and heavy. It is kind of dangerous to drive in the rain as the roads are slippery. During heavy rain, most of the time you can’t even see your surroundings clearly.
So, how do we drive in the rain to ensure the safety of ourselves and everyone else on the roads? Here are some tips beyond the obvious for safer driving in the rain!
1. Slow down
We know we’re stating the obvious, but there will always be a handful of drivers that still accelerate on the roads and potential accidents can happen. When you go slower, it gives you more time to spot and react to rainy road conditions and other vehicles. Normally, you would want to maintain two to three seconds’ worth of time between your car and the vehicle in front of you. During rainy days, that time should be doubled.
2. Keep your focus
To avoid any accidents, always keep on high alert and pay attention to the task at hand. As you drive, take careful measures to stay out of the blind spot of other vehicles on the road, especially trucks and other bigger vehicles. Besides the risk of them not seeing you, you may get doused in spray if you get too close. In any case, try to avoid trucks and buses when driving in the rain.
3. Correct a wayward skid
If the car ever loses control in the rear, take your foot off the accelerator. Then turn the steering wheel in the same direction that the back is moving (e.g if the rear end is fishtailing to the right, turn to the right). Pause for a moment to allow the car time to react to your move; then turn the wheel in the opposite direction. This technique is known as CPR (Correction – Pause – Recovery) – will help you regain control of your car.
4. Brake away
Stopping on a wet road will take longer than usual, so start to slow down sooner than you normally would. Also, you can avoid a skid by pressing the brakes while your car is pointed straight ahead. It’s always better to do all your braking in a straight line, rather than when your wheel is turned. If you depress the brake under wet conditions while you’re in a corner or while turning, you’re more likely to put the car into a spin.
So anticipate the corner ahead. Slow down before you get to a corner by taking your foot off the gas pedal and brake while wheels are in a neutral, straight position. From there, take the corner slowly.
5. Show your tires some TLC
Driving around with tires that have low pressure can make your vehicle more apt to hydroplane. Check the pressure in your tires regularly and make sure they are properly inflated. You’ll also want to monitor the tread depth of your tires. If the tire’s tread depth indicators are low, it may be time to rotate or replace the car’s tires.
6. Consistent maintenance
You don’t want to find out that you need new windshield wipers during a downpour. Take your car in for regular maintenance and replace wiper blades at least once a year. For older cars, you may need to purchase a new wiper arm, as there can bend over time and lose the pressure needed to properly clean the windshield.
Also, make sure you’re aware of your car’s safety system. Many of today’s models offer features such as anti-lock brakes, traction control, and electronic stability control, all designed to help you manoeuvre the car as you drive. Understanding how they work will help keep you and your family safe on the road.
We hope you follow our safety tips on how to drive safely in the rain. As a driver, it is our responsibility to avoid road accidents to make sure everyone on the road is safe.
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